Big winds punctuate wedding

Compiled by CNJ Staff

Jerry and James Priest lived in a cramped trailer home for nine months last year after their home was torn apart by the tornado.

Parts of their 85-year-old home were strewn around their 75 acres south of Clovis. A new office for their auction business set up in a trailer was turned upside down and smashed into the ground.

But Jerry Priest said a silver lining is starting to stretch on the horizon.

They plan to start building a new house on the foundation of the old one this week.

“We’ve come a long ways, but we haven’t near gotten everything picked up,” she said.

The Priests were having dinner at a relative’s home when the tornado struck. Jerry said they made their way home at midnight and saw the devastation the twister left.

“It was in such a mess,” she said. “It was like, ‘Where do I start at?’ Everything was a mess.”

She said the outpouring of help from the community was a bright spot during that dark time.

“The help was tremendous,” she said.

— Gabriel Monte